Ephraim, Utah- The Snow College men’s basketball team looked to gain momentum heading toward the end of the season as they prepared to take on the Bruins of Salt Lake Community College. It wouldn’t come easy against the number 20 team in the nation, but the Badgers were able to hold on and pull off the huge upset against the Bruins, 70-63.
Throughout most of the first half, defense was the focus, as the teams were tied at 17 midway through the first half. The Badgers then went on a strong scoring run, 24-6, to close out the half.
The Badgers excelled at shooting in the first half, hitting 48 percent from the floor, while holding SLCC to just 30 percent. Snow also dominated the boards, pulling down 19 rebounds.
The whole team played great, but the spotlight was on Snow College’s big men, Larenz Stalcup and Nate Aland, who each scored 10 points and grabbed six rebounds, while also playing solid defense against Bruins star center Neal Monson. Monson was held scoreless in the second half, and finished the game with nine points and four rebounds, well below his season averages.
Star players Walter Wright and Gentrey Thomas took turns carrying the Badgers, Wright finishing with 17 points and a game high seven assists, and Thomas scoring 15 on 3 of 6 shooting from beyond the arc. Wright scored 15 of his 17 points in the first half, while Thomas scored 13 of his 15 in the second.
The win puts Snow in the middle of the Scenic West Athletic Conference (SWAC) standings and creates a logjam as teams jockey for position in the upcoming postseason tournament to be held at Snow College starting Feb. 27. Since beating the Bruins at home, the Badgers lost close games on the road to Southern Idaho, 82-77, on Thursday, Feb. 13, and at North Idaho, 93-85, on Saturday, Feb. 15. Snow drops to 13-15 overall, and 4-9 in conference play. The Badgers host USU-Eastern this Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and Colorado Northwestern at 5:00 p.m. The Snow women tipoff both days two hours before the men play.